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PLACEBO 2024 doc launch image photo credit Mads Perch

Shirley Manson, Robbie Williams, Joe Talbot and Self Esteem to feature in forthcoming Placebo documentary

12 June 2024, 16:58 | Written by Tyler Damara Kelly

Placebo have announced the documentary, This Search For Meaning, which explores the ideas that inhabit the lyrics and subject matter of Placebo’s songs, whilst charting their evolution as a group and as human beings.

Since emerging from obscurity in the 1990s with provocative songs such as “Nancy Boy” and “Bruise Pristine”, Placebo forged a decidedly unfashionable path through the brazenly macho ‘Britpop’ scene to explore subjects such as the body politic and the continued erosion of our human rights and our individuality, the ever-growing epidemic of apathy in society and the hubris & corruption of those in power.

Scottish award-winning filmmaker Oscar Sansom charts the band’s ongoing impact and legacy through a visual meditation on contemporary themes such as surveillance culture and scrutiny, sexuality and gender identity, addiction and trauma as well as the climate crisis. These significant and weighty themes are explored in both an informal and personally authored manner through brand new interviews with band members Brian Molko and Stefan Olsdal.

These entertaining and often emotive discussions are presented as a single, yet multi-faceted, overheard conversation – and include the likes of Shirley Manson (Garbage), Robbie Williams, Yungblud, Rebecca Lucy Taylor (Self Esteem), Joe Talbot (IDLES) as well as contemporary artist Stuart Semple.

The film’s overall narrative is structured around incredible and completely new performances of Placebo’s latest songs – taken from their recent album, Never Let Me Go – captured at Britain’s legendary Twickenham Film Studios, where The Beatles can be seen composing a new album in Peter Jackson’s Get Back; as well as intercut with archive footage of the band, and exclusive, never-before-seen, material that spans across their entire career, including their creative and personal collaboration with David Bowie and his enduring influence.

This Search For Meaning will be released in September. For more information, visit

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